Witnesses Take To The Stand In The Clay Starbuck Trial; Dylan Wo - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Witnesses Take To The Stand In The Clay Starbuck Trial; Dylan Wohlenhaus Reports

Posted: Updated:

SPOKANE, Wash. - Monday marked day two of the Clay Starbuck trial. Several witnesses took to the stand.

Prosecutors called several witnesses to the stand to try and prove Clay Starbuck murdered his ex-wife Chanin. Detectives testified on Monday that when they found the body of Chanin in her bedroom, she was laying in a position that would "dis-credit her," leaving investigators to believe her death was no accident.

Detectives testified Clay showed up at a neighbor's home while investigators were on scene and asked, "why are you at my ex wife's house," and  told detectives that he was "concerned because of the lifestyle" Chanin was living.

Detectives testified they believe Clay was trying to point their investigation in a "different direction." Starbuck's defense attorneys cross examined the detectives as they testified.

Clay has also told authorities that Chanin would meet men online and dropped hints of Chanin's alleged "sexual proclivity."

PREVIOUS STORY:

SPOKANE, Wash. Opening statements began Thursday in the trial of Clay Starbuck, who is accused of murdering his ex-wife and sexually violating human remains. Chanin Starbuck was found dead in her deer park home in December of 2011. Not long after the murder deputies arrested her ex-husband Clay and said he was the man responsible for the crime. 

The state made their opening statements first and they said that the DNA showed it could have only been one of three people: Clay Starbuck or two of his kids. The kids were at work and school. 

The defense talked about Clay as a family man and said that he was a devoted father who spoke with Chanin only in the interest of their children. Clay Starbuck called Crime Check out of concern for Chanin and he consoled the kids about the loss of their mother.

The defense claimed Clay voluntarily offered all of his information including cell phone records and DNA because they claim Clay had nothing to hide. 

KHQ Local News will be in the courtroom for the duration of this trial.

PREVIOUS STORY:

DEER PARK, Wash – The trial for Clay Starbuck, 48, is now underway at the Spokane County Courthouse, beginning with jury selection.

Starbuck is charged with aggravated first-degree murder in the December 2011 death of his ex-wife, Chanin Starbuck, at her Deer Park home, and sexually violating her remains.

Monday, KHQ learned the defense plans to call Chanin's own mother as a witness in the case, meaning she can not sit in on the proceedings against her own daughter's accused killer.  As a result, she was not able to comment to KHQ Monday.

This case began back in late 2011, when Chanin Starbuck's out-of-town relatives reported to police they hadn't heard from her in a while, her phone was off, and they were concerned about potential domestic violence involving her ex-husband, Clay.

Chanin had filed four police reports with the Spokane County Sheriff's Office in the months before her death, concerned that Clay Starbuck had been entering her home and stealing property without her knowledge.

Through the course of the investigation, police began to believe Starbuck planned to kill his ex-wife, asked her to take their kids to school on the morning of December 1, 2011, then came into her home while she was away, hid, and attacked her upon her return.

Chanin Starbuck was found strangled on a bed, and police believe her body was positioned after her death so as to humiliate her.

In court Monday, a family friend told KHQ his wife was a supervisor in the dental program at Spokane Community College, which Chanin Starbuck had just graduated from a few months before her death.  Chanin reportedly told her, "Clay's going to kill me."

Monday, Clay Starbuck's defense attorney, Derek Reid, stood by the innocence of his client, telling KHQ, "I can't believe they arrested the wrong man."

Opening arguments are expected to begin later this week, and the trial is expected to last a month.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • PHOTOS: Flash flooding & mudslides trap people in Okanogan County

    PHOTOS: Flash flooding & mudslides trap people in Okanogan County

    Friday, August 22 2014 9:12 PM EDT2014-08-23 01:12:14 GMT
    OKANOGAN COUNTY, Wash.- Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers tells KHQ that as of 5:00pm Friday evening, Highway 20 is back open and no homes are threaten after numerous mudslides washed out roads and stranded drivers Thursday night and Friday morning. >>
    OKANOGAN COUNTY, Wash.- Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers tells KHQ that as of 5:00pm Friday evening, Highway 20 is back open and no homes are threaten after numerous mudslides washed out roads and stranded drivers Thursday night and Friday morning. >>
  • PHOTOS: CASH REWARD offered for information leading to the arrest of these FUGITIVES

    PHOTOS: CASH REWARD offered for information leading to the arrest of these FUGITIVES

    Friday, August 22 2014 7:41 PM EDT2014-08-22 23:41:09 GMT
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Crime Stoppers of the Inland Northwest is offering cash rewards for any information leading to the arrest of the fugitives listed on their website as of August 21, 2014. If you recognize any of these fugitives, you are asked call 1-800-222 TIPS.>>
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Crime Stoppers of the Inland Northwest is offering cash rewards for any information leading to the arrest of the fugitives listed on their website as of August 21, 2014. If you recognize any of these fugitives, you are asked call 1-800-222 TIPS.>>
  • Dog recovering from gun shots looks for loving home

    Dog recovering from gun shots looks for loving home

    Friday, August 22 2014 5:00 PM EDT2014-08-22 21:00:29 GMT
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Just for a second, forget everything you think you know about Pit Bulls. Forget that you think they are vicious or that you've heard they attack children. Approaching this story with an open mind might just change your opinion of what can actually be a very sweet, people-loving breed. A very special pit bull is lucky to be alive after enduring two gun shot wounds and abuse that left her blind in one eye.>>
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Just for a second, forget everything you think you know about Pit Bulls. Forget that you think they are vicious or that you've heard they attack children. Approaching this story with an open mind might just change your opinion of what can actually be a very sweet, people-loving breed. A very special pit bull is lucky to be alive after enduring two gun shot wounds and abuse that left her blind in one eye.>>
  • Top Stories from KHQTop StoriesMore>>

  • Spokane County Sheriff's Office gets new helicopters thanks to donation

    Spokane County Sheriff's Office gets new helicopters thanks to donation

    Saturday, August 23 2014 2:35 AM EDT2014-08-23 06:35:27 GMT
    SPOKANE COUNTY, Wash.- In mid-August the Spokane County Sheriff's office announced they're getting new helicopters. The new helicopters will replace the aging Air One chopper that the Sheriff's office uses right now. On Friday we got a first hand look at one of the two helicopters, which were donated by the U.S. Army and cost taxpayers nothing.>>
    SPOKANE COUNTY, Wash.- In mid-August the Spokane County Sheriff's office announced they're getting new helicopters. The new helicopters will replace the aging Air One chopper that the Sheriff's office uses right now. On Friday we got a first hand look at one of the two helicopters, which were donated by the U.S. Army and cost taxpayers nothing.>>
  • Gleason Fest 2014 set for Saturday, August 23rd

    Gleason Fest 2014 set for Saturday, August 23rd

    Saturday, August 23 2014 1:57 AM EDT2014-08-23 05:57:35 GMT
    SPOKANE, Wash.- You've been watching the ALS ice bucket challenges all week, but on Saturday, August 23rd, the mother of all ALS events is set to take place: Gleason Fest 2014. Named for Spokane native and former New Orleans Saint Steve Gleason, the event will be held in downtown Spokane at Division and Main.>>
    SPOKANE, Wash.- You've been watching the ALS ice bucket challenges all week, but on Saturday, August 23rd, the mother of all ALS events is set to take place: Gleason Fest 2014. Named for Spokane native and former New Orleans Saint Steve Gleason, the event will be held in downtown Spokane at Division and Main.>>